The June Edition of the South Florida Parenting Magazine is out. It features lots of great ideas for summer including an article by yours truly. Check it out!
Summer is a time for fun but that’s no reason for children to stop learning. If children are given learning activities during the summer it will make the transition back to school much easier. Keep your children’s minds active all summer with these ideas that turn summer activities into fun learning opportunities.
1. Blow up a beach ball and draw a line around the center of it like the equator. Now write one number 0-9 in each of the colored sections. Toss the ball around and when your child catches it have him/her add the two numbers that his hands are on. Older children can multiply the two numbers.
2. Have a kiddie pool? Fill it up and give kids various size containers- 1 cup, 1 pint, 1 quart, 1 gallon, etc. Kids can play in the water while transferring water from one container to another. How much water is needed to fill each container? How many quarts fill a gallon? If you have lots of kids over, make a relay race using a measuring cup to carry water across to a larger container like a gallon. The team that fills their gallon container first wins.
3. Going out to a restaurant? Have your child find various letters on the menu. Have older children search for various words on the menu or have them read the menu to you. Getting ready to pay the check? Have older children figure out the tip and the change.
4. Have kids practice writing letters or words on the driveway with sidewalk chalk. Older kids can write sentences or a poem with chalk. Raining outside? Use dry erase markers inside on a mirror the same way.
5. Set up a lemonade stand. Not only will your children get to practice measurements and following recipe directions but they’ll also get to practice counting money and making change.
6. Children love helping in the kitchen so dig out some cookbooks and let your children go through them and pick recipes they’d like to do with you. Older kids can read through the cookbooks while younger children might need some help. Once you select a recipe, your little chef can practice measuring while helping you cook the recipe.
7. Make a summer journal where children can write what they do each day. Younger children can draw a picture and write a few words while older children can write longer stories about their daily adventures.
8. Going on vacation? Get out a map and have your child help you plot out your route. Staying local? Get a local map or print one from the internet. Have your child plot each place he/she goes all summer with a colored dot. By the end of the summer you might be surprised how much you got around.
9. Practice calendar skills by counting down to upcoming events, a vacation, the first day of school, etc. Practice telling time- Going to the park at 3:00? Have your child figure out how many hours until you go? How many minutes until you go?
10. Read, read, read! Read with your child as much as possible. Have your child read to you, a younger sibling, or even a pet. Set a goal for how many books you’ll read over the summer and a special reward for completing your goal. Check with your local library to see if they have any summer reading incentive program for children. Some banks and other companies also have similar summer reading incentive programs. When your children are riding in the car have them read the signs. Younger children who can’t read can point things they see such as letters, colors, etc.